This week Learning Disability England is holding a meeting for our members about social care funding. Or lack of funding!
There are lots of problems in social care.
We know that there has not been enough money given to social care. This means lots of people aren’t getting support they need. Reduced budget in social care also puts extra pressure on the NHS.
We have a bigger population and an ageing one as well.
We have People with mild learning disabilities and Moderate learning disabilities losing out.
We have people who have multiple disabilities losing out.
We have ageing families who are worried about the future for their sons and daughters.
There is a lot that needs to be done.
There needs to be long term funding.
Services need to be brought up to the 21st Century and we need money to make that happen.
Codes & Practices must be the same wherever you live. These should be produced by people with learning disabilities along with their families.
People should be able to get care in the community. So instead of putting money into ATUs, this money should be put towards Learning Disability nurses who work in the community.
To make social care better we all need to work together and campaign for what is right. This means Housing, Education, Health, Charities, Social Services, Volunteering Organisations, Disabled Peoples Organisation, Self-Advocacy groups and Family organisations all need to work in partnership.
Raising local council tax to pay for social care is a stop gap solution. What we need more of is a permanent solution from the government with a cross party approach. It’s everyone’s problem so everyone needs to work together to find a solution.
The short term quick fixes are not enough, the government needs to think of long term effects on society.
Housing and funding for people to live is needed to sustain everything. A home forms the base for someone to live their lives from; helping with health, work, education and leisure activities.
Localized funding supported by the government should make sure that all services around the country are of an equally high standard whether it be city, town or rural area.
Social care standards are particularly important for people such as elderly people or people with a learning disability.
User led groups and family groups needs to have a big say in making social care fit for the 21st Century.
Policies on Social Care need to be developed by User led groups and families.
Social care should be more run by user led groups, especially self-advocacy groups but also family led groups.
People with learning disabilities in 2017 are not feeling as if their aspirations are being met.
Social care should be supported to keep people healthier for longer and we all need to work harder in joining up thinking and working around the UK.
We should start asking ourselves: What would social care fit for the 21st Century actually look like?
Then we need to take serious steps to actually get us there.
Progress starts now.
By Gary Bourlet.